This week, swastikas and other racist graffiti were found drawn on desks at three different schools in Montgomery County, Maryland.
In a statement, Montgomery County Public Schools and the school system’s superintendent Monifa Mcknight, along with the Board of Education, said they condemns antisemitism and hate speech.
It also stated that MCPS has worked to get rid of the drawings and discipline those responsible.
But the school system said how they respond to these incidents is “more important than disciplinary action.”
“As we fight these repeated acts of hate, we must challenge one another to learn and understand what antisemitism, hatred, and racism are and the harm they cause,” the statement reads.
On Friday, a Silver Creek Middle School parent tweeted out a statement the school had released to parents, saying, “As a No Place for Hate school, we find this behavior to be unacceptable and against [the school’s] core values.”
MCPS said it has been working with advocates like the Jewish Community Relations Council in informing students about antisemitism. They pledged as a community to speak out against all types of “hate and racism.”
“We must be inclusive and welcoming of everyone in our diverse and vibrant community. Our differences make us stronger and better and make our community an exciting place to live; there is no room for hate,” the statement reads.
MCPS said it will continue to do work to make sure that students are in “safe and welcoming school environments.”
The Montgomery County Council also spoke out against the drawings, while thanking the school system for its response.
“We cannot allow schools to become places of fear,” the statement from the council reads. “We must continue to forcibly speak out against hate and religious bigotry in all forms and continue to educate our youth about the values of inclusivity, diversity and acceptance that we embrace here in Montgomery County.”
Police said “racist and antisemitic writing” was also found in two Loudoun County, Virginia, public schools.